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It's Good to be Back

Due to a combination of a sense of family responsibility and some ludicrously cheap flights I decided to spend the festive season back in the UK.

The "spending time with the family" part of mission was successful. In other areas things hadn't gone so well. Apart from a few fine days (which I took full advantage of) the weather was bad. Not just bad, but newsworthy bad. I should consider myself fortunate that it didn't affect any of my travel plans. Stupidly I wasn't really prepared for the weather, I didn't have any boots with me and the umbrella that I'd brought would be relatively useless in the wind and the rain. So, I didn't get much exercise and completely failed to lose any weight. Shopping in the sales didn't go too well either. I only managed to buy a woolly hat, a scarf and one shirt (which is not very slightly too tight for me).

After nearly two and a half weeks I was quite happy to be heading home (and by home I mean Kraków which I now consider to be my home). The flight back was uneventful, but the view was fantastic. I had a good seat, the visibility was good and we approached the airport from the right direction. First I spotted Tyniec, shortly followed by Wawel Castle and The Planty. An hour later and I was at home. The rest of day (after replenishing my food supplies) I just spent relaxing and catching up on some badly-needed sleep.

It wasn't until Thursday evening (after a full day's work) that I really appreciated being back in Kraków again. Entertainment for the evening was provided by Talking Dog International. This event was held in Klub Piękny Pies (Beautiful Dog) and consisted of a series of performers taking to the stage for five or ten minutes each to present whatever they like (be it songs, poetry or some factual/historic/political presentation). For example, the event's organiser David McGirr (of the Kraków Post) gave a slide show and talk about the haggis and Robert Burns. Despite going there alone I saw quite a few people I knew there and it was a jolly good night (with a concert from The Silver Owls at the end of the night).

I managed to do a few good deeds that evening too. On the way to Talking Dog I'd helped someone push their car. On the way back I managed to help out a few more people. One guy asked me for a very specific amount of money (the equivalent of 10 pence) so that he had enough money to buy a beer. Normally I don't give money to "beggars", but this time it seemed like a worthy cause. A couple of guys then asked me the way to the station. Whenever I return to Poland after being in the UK for a while my Polish is always a bit rusty. So, rather than giving the guys bad directions, I told them to "go straight on and ask somebody else".

So, I went to bed with a warm fuzzy feeling that night (only a small percentage of this feeling was beer-induced). It's good to be back.

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